A theory of art and an approach to living that influenced many European and American gay male and lesbian writers at the turn of the twentieth century, aestheticism stressed the independence of art from all moral and social conditions and judgments.
Historically either distrusted as agents of chaos or admired as examples of female power and intelligence, Amazons were depicted as heterosexual until the twentieth century, when lesbians adopted them as symbols of powerful women living without men.
One of the masters of French nineteenth-century fiction, Balzac provocatively includes both lesbian and gay male characters in his novels.
French semiotician Roland Barthes argued that the reintroduction of the sentimentality of love into sexuality would be the ultimate transgression.
Baudelaire was among the first French poets to include lesbians as subjects.
Through her Parisian bookshop and her editorial work, American expatriate and lesbian Sylvia Beach did much to influence the course of modern literature.
Best known for her revolutionary study of women's condition, The Second Sex (1949) and as the companion of philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir had a number of same-sex relationships during her life.
Although Western culture's reliance upon binary systems of classification and identification has meant the practical erasure of bisexuality, as such, from literary and cultural analysis, bisexual experiences appear in many literary works from ancient times to the present.
French feminist theorist and novelist Hélène Cixous celebrates female homoeroticism and feminist solidarity.
Carlo Coccioli, Italian-born trilingual writer and author of the landmark gay novel Fabrizio Lupo (1952), depicted the struggle to find and keep religious faith in spite of the absurdity of life and the propensity of human beings to dehumanize each other.
An outspoken homosexual, Jean Cocteau was a prolific poet, novelist, critic, essayist, artist, and filmmaker.
One of France's most beloved authors, Colette wrote novels with strong lesbian subtexts.
The Comedy of Manners, which flourished on the Restoration stage, has been particularly amenable to twentieth-century gay male writers as a vehicle for social satire in both dramatic and nondramatic works.
Nineteenth-century Decadent literature either describes aspects of decadent life and society or reflects the decadent literary aesthetic.
Erotic and pornographic works have been written in many cultures since ancient times and recently have flourished with the relaxation of censorship.
A member of the Académie française, novelist and academic Dominique Fernandez pioneered the "psychobiography" and explores the complex question of the outlaw nature of homosexuality.
An expatriate journalist, novelist, and translator, Janet Flanner spent most of her adult life in Paris with her lover Solita Solano.
One of the leading philosophers of the twentieth century, Foucault has had an enormous influence on our understanding of the lesbian and gay literary heritage and the cultural forces surrounding it.
While evidence from earlier centuries is sparse, from the sixteenth century onward there were several French writers who treated male and female homosexuality.
In the nineteenth century gay and lesbian sexuality becomes a significant subject in French literature.
The contributions of gay men and lesbians to twentieth-century French literature have been closely intertwined with the course of mainstream literature.
French-speaking theater has a long history of depicting male and female homosexuals and in exploring the complexities of homosexual life.
Jean Genet's work has left a powerful legacy to post-modernity and remains a provocation to questions of gay identity.
Both male and female homosexuality or homosexual elements appear throughout the broad scope of ghost and horror fiction.
André Gide, one of the premier French writers of the twentieth century, reflected his homosexuality in many of his numerous works.